Endocrinology in the time of COVID-19

 

The European Journal of Endocrinology (EJE) acknowledges the unprecedented challenge posed by the global COVID-19 pandemic, demanding a global medical response we could never have anticipated facing in our lifetime. EJE is committed to support the global endocrine community in this time of crisis.

We ask our authors to continue submitting manuscripts and revising them in line with the reviewers’ comments. Likewise, we ask our reviewers to still commit to reviewing manuscripts submitted to EJE. However, we will be very accommodating to authors and reviewers with regards to the urgent time constraints placed upon them, and provide you with more time for your tasks if you need it. Simply contact the Editorial Office and we will grant extensions to deadlines as required.

In turn, we would like to ask you to be lenient with us, if the turnaround time of EJE papers becomes slightly longer than you are used to.

COVID-19 places an extraordinary strain on healthcare systems, pushing them towards breaking points in some, if not most countries. Endocrinologists all over the world are working on developing new care pathways to keep their patients as safe as possible and to respond as effectively as possible to patients presenting as emergencies.

We have decided to respond to this urgent need and commission a review series entitled 'Endocrinology in the time of COVID-19'. This new EJE collection will provide guidance on how to approach the management of endocrine patients at a time when we are facing unprecedented restrictions on our diagnostic and therapeutic capacity.

We thank the global endocrine leaders who have accepted our invitation to contribute to this effort and we will update the EJE website with the resulting papers as soon as they pass through the expedited peer review and production process.

 

EJE Collection: Endocrinology in the time of COVID – suggested structure

 

Authors should address the following key items:

  • How will COVID-19 impact on the endocrine condition in question?
  • How to manage acutely unwell patients with the condition without full investigations (i.e. imagine crisis management, e.g. in 1,000 bed 'field hospital' without full biochemistry support – how can existing algorithms be pragmatically modified, emphasising clinical assessment)
  • How should current patients with endocrine condition x be advised about risk? (What are the expected risks given the underlying condition, which patients should be strictest about isolation?)
  • How should endocrine services for the condition be remodelled in the acute crisis? E.g. staggered use of telephone call, videoconference, face-to-face appointments; suggest considering different scenarios (3, 6, 9 or 12 months of disruption)
    • Who still needs to be seen and why? (how to weigh up relative risks)
    • What/who can be converted safely to remote review?
    • What online resources are available; what will be necessary?
  • What might be the longer term consequence for service provision?

 

The submission criteria for the papers is as follows:

  • These should be brief, to-the-point, pragmatic guidance documents
  • Bullet-pointed abstracts, outlining the key messages of the document
  • They should be no longer than 2000 words and no more than 4 figures/schematic/charts/tables (translating to a maximum 4 pages in print)
  • Ideally authored by 2-3 authors, if possible from different countries exposed to COVID-19
  • We expect the paper to be written and sent to us within 1-2 weeks
  • Each paper will be published Open Access and we will waive the Article Processing Fee for all papers published in this collection.
  • Each guidance document will have the following disclaimer added to the document: “Due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis this document is not based on extensive systematic review or meta-analysis, but on rapid expert consensus. The document should be considered as guidance only; it is not intended to determine an absolute standard of medical care. Healthcare staff need to consider individual circumstances when devising the management plan for a specific patient.”

 

We will then put the papers through an expedited peer review by the EJE Editorial Board and additional leading experts in the field, aiming to arrive at pragmatic minor revision decisions if appropriate. Accepted manuscripts will go online immediately as Open Access and EJE will feature the entire review series on the EJE website.